SPFBO 8 Review: Fire of the Forebears by L.A. Buck

SPFBO 8: Fire of the Forebears by L.A. Buck

Welcome to the SPFBO 8 Finals! Team Queen’s Book Asylum reviews Fire of the Forebears by L.A. Buck, picked by Bookborn.

Unfortunately, the author, L.A. Buck passed away before Fire of the Forebears was announced as a finalist. We send our condolences to their family and friends.

A quick reminder about how we are proceeding in the Finals: our judges had the freedom to opt out of reading any of the books due to personal interest, time restrictions, unforeseen life events, etc. Our aim is to have at least 3 reviews/scores for each finalist, which shouldn’t be too hard between the 5 of us. For Fire of the Forebears we have 2 reviews and 3 scores for your reading pleasures, so, let’s get down to it!

About the Book
Series:Heritor’s Helm #1
Genre:Fantasy, Epic Fantasy
Date of Publishing: February 22, 2022
Book Blurb
Fire of the Forebears by L.A. Buck

Pitted against one another, with the people and country they love in jeopardy, the daughter of a deserter and the son of the king have a chance to fulfill their forebears’ legacy—or destroy it entirely.

Twisted monsters called saja lurk in the shadows of the mountains. Rumors say the Fidelis, human wielders of an ancient elemental magic, again walk the plains. Not all in Avaron believe, and not all welcome the return of legend.

Kura’s a skeptic. But, she’ll cross and befriend centaurs, talking animals, and worse to save her family after the rebellion mistakes her for the land’s prophesied savior. And, while he’d rather negotiate with rebels than fight them, Triston can’t ignore prophecy. That was the sham his father used to steal the crown in the first place.

Over a century ago, their ancestors sailed the oceans in search of peace and died as heroes fighting for it. But heroes—and villains—aren’t always what they seem to be.



Fire of the Forebears is a familiar style fantasy that doesn’t particularly break any new ground but for those looking for a comfort read, it will probably hit all of the right chords for you. The aspects of this book that I especially enjoyed were the magic and worldbuilding, which are quite good. We are sort of dumped in the middle of the plot at the beginning of the book, which can be challenging if you aren’t able to get up to speed fairly quickly. I have to admit that I had a difficult time fully grasping the entirety of the situation for the first quarter or so of the book. But once I caught on I was able to settle in and focus on the story. Like I said, there’s not much new here and if I’m being honest this felt like a book that I’ve read many times before. I’m also not usually a fan of talking animals in my fantasy, it is kind of a turn off, so that made this even more of an uphill battle. That being said I can’t deny that it is a charming tale with many of the trappings that it is easy to get enmeshed in if you are a lover of fantasy. So in the end I’ll say that while I didn’t especially love Fire of the Forebears, I won’t say that I disliked it a whole lot either. Many fantasy readers will enjoy the interesting characters, witty dialogue, and ambitious worldbuilding. I would recommend that you give it a read if you want something fun and fast-paced.



Fires of the Forebears has a very classical, old-school fantasy feel with prophecies, chosen ones (or are they?), and a heap of races, plus many other fantasy mainstays.

You get two main POV characters, Kura, who find herself fighting in a rebellion against the ruling kingdom, and Prince Triston, who is, well, the prince of said kingdom. Though distinct, their paths do cross, and both have a big impact on the potential direction of the wider world.

Though I did appreciate the epic thought behind both plot and world-building, I just found it too much, and I really struggled to really engage with the characters and the overall narrative. There was just too much going on, too much information being thrown into the mix, and too much telling at the cost of not enough showing.

If, however, you’re in the market for some YA fantasy with a dash of epic, a subtle dusting of romance, and more talking animals than you can shake a stick at, Fires of the Forebears might be the one for you.

Our Judgement

Our score for Fire of the Forebears by L.A. Buck:

Score 5.5/10

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